These are exciting times for young Nigerians. Unless you’ve been disconnected from the modern world, you’d know that a lot of activities — or what some people would term “distractions” — stand in the way of voters as we approach the 2023 general elections.
On January 15, 2023, we were treated to the latest of them, the Big Brother Titans. The reality show which is hosted by Multichoice on DStv has found popularity among young Nigerian audiences, especially within the Gen Z age bracket. Without much ado, let’s get into the gist of these so-called distractions.
The beautiful game is loved by millions of Nigerians. Lots of us follow the big European leagues like the Italian Serie A and the English Premier League. As title challenges get tougher, so does the decision to select Nigeria’s next President.
Let’s face it, you won’t always watch your team play. Either because you’re unavailable or in some cases — like Chelsea fans will tell you — your team isn’t fun to watch.
You can stream the highlights later while you dedicate election weekends to voting. Suspend watching football or even playing football so you don’t disenfranchise yourself as a registered voter.
Netflix (and chill)
2023 will see lots of great shows featured on your favourite streaming services like Netflix, Prime and Showmax. There’s also the chill component which should be more than enough to distract you from any pressing issues, including elections.
We ask that you take two days off — February 25 and March 11 — to exercise your civic duties. The elections come once in four years. You can always return to Netflix, so chill.
Everyone looks forward to the end of a work week, which makes Friday everyone’s favourite day. Trouble is, you could party too hard on Friday and get completely hungover on Saturday which is election day.
We’re not saying you shouldn’t be a baller, we’re only saying you shouldn’t forget to mark February 25 on your calendar. Let’s get out there and vote the right people in so we don’t become mechanics.
BBTitans is a reality show that brings together housemates from two countries, Nigeria and South Africa. It’s the first time this is happening. The original shows in the respective countries are Big Brother Naija (BBN) and Big Brother Mzansi. This merger will see the best — and worst — of both cultures battle it out over 72 days for the grand prize of $100,000.
The show’s title alludes to the fact that the two countries are the continent’s economic titans vying for supremacy.
Meanwhile, Nigerians on social media have held interesting opinions regarding the show’s timing. One account referred to the organisers as part of an “organized crime syndicate.”
Then there’s this guy below concerned about the “over 20 housemates” that will determine the outcome of the 2023 elections. An election with over 93 million eligible voters.
While these are no doubt comical, there’s nothing that says you can’t have the best of both worlds. Go out and vote for your candidate during the day and then vote for your favourite housemate up for eviction in the evening.
Twitter is a fun place to be for banter and the occasional dragging. It’s also a place to get lost in, same as other social media platforms around like TikTok, Facebook or YouTube.
While we’re all for having fun, don’t do it at the expense of missing out on voting on election day. It’s the least you owe yourself if you truly want Nigeria to get better.
In summary, there are enough distractions to go around — those are unavoidable. You shouldn’t, however, use them as excuses to not exercise your civil rights. Big Brother, football, Netflix or Twitter will always be there. The polling booth on the other hand will be closed for voting by 4pm on the election days.
So the ultimate question is, would you rather trade a moment of inconvenience for four years of suffering?
We write the news and track the 2023 elections for citizens by citizens in our weekly newsletter, Game of Votes. Make the subscription of a lifetime here.